Author Topic: Railway ticket prices shocker  (Read 1209 times)

librarian

  • Quiet please
Railway ticket prices shocker
« on: November 05, 2009, 09:33:27 am »
Or, if you really did want to buy a walk on FC ticket for this ridiculous route, then you'd pay £990 for a 14 day all line FC Rover ticket.

Or just £650 for the 7 day all line 1st Class Rover.

With trains it doesn't seem so simple.

I find it pretty simple, just remember the following things:-

* You can book tickets up to 12 weeks (84 days) in advance.
* In general, the earlier you can book the cheaper it will be
* To get a cheap advance fare you have to book onto a specific train (therefore the train must be able to take reservations)
* Each train has a certain number of cheap advance tickets at set prices
* The batches of these tickets are separate for standard and 1st classes. You might find a 1st class ticket for cheaper than the cheapest standard class ticket, or maybe just a few £ more which can be well worth it.
* Use a website like
   National Express > Home > Train tickets for travel to London, York, Leeds, Newcastle, Edinburgh, Glasgow
to search for trains and tickets. The site is a bit "busy" but makes perfect sense once you're used to it as it allows all of the information without constant clicking to other pages
* If you've got two options for returning (say 3pm and 8pm), and are unsure as to which you'll need, then you could find that booking both options is cheaper than paying for an open return or walk up fare.
* Two singles are often cheaper than a "return" because return tickets usually don't have a booking for the return leg, which means you can't take advantage of the cheaper advance fares. If you do book a specific train for the return leg then it's no different to booking two singles as each journey is priced separately.

Other than that it's a case of plugging in the dates and locations you are travelling, selecting the advanced fare option(s) at the top and then looking at the prices/times and picking the one that suits best. Give 1st class a go to see if it's better or worse. Select tickets. Add a bicycle space. Purchase. Done. No more than 10 minutes when you know what you're doing. I know I can spare 10 minutes if it's going to save me £100 over a walk up fare.

Further discounts are possible by splitting your journey at various places, especially if you have to change trains (and train operators) during one journey. You might not be getting the cheapest deal by booking the whole thing as one. This is rarely a problem for me as I'm based in London and all of my journeys rarely need a change of trains (or at least train operators). I don't bother with this step since I rarely pay more than £20 for a ticket to Bristol/Doncaster/Birmingham, etc. Usually it's £4 to Oxford too.

or just hide in the bogs  :thumbsup: